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Evaluate your vision

Initial and Continuous
Self-Reflection

What are you going to prioritize moving forward?

What are you going to prioritize moving forward?

Before you develop your organization’s intentional food safety culture improvement strategy, it’s important to evaluate the vision of your overall company culture. For example, is leadership allocating enough resources to improve food safety practices? Do employees understand the importance of their role to ensure safe food?

Your company culture encompasses numerous shared values, beliefs, and norms that affect how members of your company behave. For example, within a company with a “mature, positive work culture,” a team member may feel comfortable reporting a food safety risk without fear of retaliation from their manager–even if it means halting production.

To evaluate your own company culture, start by looking at what behaviors are working well and what may need to be changed, define who is responsible for communicating food safety expectations, and identify the problem you are trying to solve.

Only after self-reflection your company can then understand which ways of working need to be developed or changed to create, foster and strengthen food safety behaviors across the company.

What are you going to prioritize moving forward?

some questions that can help guide the self-reflection process:

WHO

  • Who is responsible for ensuring the team is committed to upholding a positive food safety culture?
  • Who is guiding the change in the long run?
  • Who are the shared partners in your overall culture (e.g., engineering, worker safety, human resources, production)?
  • Is collaboration prioritized during this self-reflection?
  • Who are your food safety culture champions?
  • ○ Are they across your company?
    ○ Are they executive champions?
  • Are each person’s roles and expectations clearly understood?

what

  • What does your overall company culture look like?
  • What are your company behaviors/values you're tying into?
  • What problem are you trying to solve?
  • What does "good" look like?
  • § Examine your key performance indicators (e.g., consumer complaints, training completion, annual surveys which indicate areas to make continuous improvements).

    § Examine your existing food safety data (what do you say you're doing now, are you actually doing it, how are you measuring it and reacting to it).

    § Review your food safety and management system looking for food safety behaviors and drivers of food safety behaviors.
    ○ What is behavior?
    ○ What is a reaction to a behavior?

how

  • How is food safety culture evaluated or reevaluated?
  • How do you find solutions?
  • How do you prioritize your solutions?
  • How do you currently implement meaningful culture and behavior changes?
  • How does every level of leadership demonstrate their commitment to food safety
  • How do you currently sustain improvements?

What are you going to prioritize moving forward?

Some Caveats to the Self-Reflection Process:

  • It is on-going and your food safety culture should be reassessed at a regular cadence. Depending on your resources, this may be annually or bi-annually. But we suggest marking it on your calendar and adding it to your standard workflow. This activity should not be an afterthought. It is critical to establish a baseline and measure progress.
  • The questions we provide are only to guide you in this journey. Some may not be applicable to your situation, and you may develop others that are not listed here.
  • The self-reflection process will take time and energy on your part. Carve out time to dedicate to this important work and communicate to co-workers and supervisors the importance.
  • We don’t endorse a particular survey. And they are not one-size-fits-all.

In Addition to Self-Reflection,
to Assess Your Current Food Safety
Culture You Might Also Employ:

  • Behavioral Observations
  • Interviews
  • Surveys